Peak performance boosts cancer charity

IT really was summit amazing when an intrepid team of trekkers reached the roof of Africa while raising more than £10,000 for a cancer charity.

Led by Woking team leader Parag Khiroya, the group – from Nicolites, the UK’s leading electronic cigarette brand and sponsors of Woking Football Club – were on top of the world when they reached the summit of Kilimanjaro, an impressive 5,895 metres above sea level.

The team included Chiraag Thakrar, Keshav Thirumalai, Raminder Poonian, Ravi and his father Paresh Khiroya, and Samita Nathoo.

They followed the longest – and some say most arduous – Lemosho route, which took eight days and seven nights of trekking more than 60km through the national park in Tanzania.

Their once-in-a-lifetime adventure tested their endurance to the limit, but they were all determined to make it to the peak to haul in £10,000 from supporters for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Parag, director of pharmacy firm Dime, explained: “Kilimanjaro is the highest free-standing mountain in the world and attracts thousands of trekkers each year hoping to reach its summit. We’d trained for the trip and had been advised on how best to prepare, but we all found it very tough at times and the altitude really took its toll on one or two of us. However, we all battled on and made it to the top.

“It was a fantastic feeling to look down over Africa from its highest peak, knowing we’d achieved something quite special. I’d like to thank everyone who supported us and I’m delighted we can help a very worthwhile cause such as Macmillan.”

Ravi said: “The route took us through the rainforest and past spectacular views.”

Chiraag added: “The highs included being above the clouds and seeing the incredible stars at night. The lows were seeing people suffer from the altitude.”

Ravi concluded: “The real challenge began at about 5,000m on summit night, when the effect of altitude took hold and I really began to struggle. If it wasn’t for Parag, I doubt I would have made it.

“The best part of the trek however, was reaching the summit as a group.”

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